High winds create dangerous fire conditions this afternoon

Posted at 5:51 AM, Feb 13, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-13 15:05:25-05

Today’s Forecast:
Colorado is in for a very busy day with a high wind warning in effect for Pikes Peak and the southern mountains, Red Flag Warnings over our entire coverage area, and heavy mountain snow from the Continental Divide to western Colorado. The winds will start to increase by the mid morning and become incredibly strong from lunch time today through tomorrow morning. Wind gusts in the Pikes Peak area will be in the 30 to 40 mph range, but the southern I-25 corridor from Colorado City to Trinidad could see wind gusts to and over 60 mph, enough to tip a semi truck on its side. High winds and low humidity will mean brush and grass fires could easily ignite and spread quickly. The only nice thing about today will be the temperatures, a strong gusty wind will push most highs in the lower elevations into the 60 mph range.

COLORADO SPRINGS: High – 60; Low – 38. Warm with strong afternoon and overnight winds with wind gusts in the 30 to 40 mph range, stronger winds are expected closer to Cheyenne mountain.

PUEBLO: High – 67; Low – 37. Very warm with strong afternoon and overnight winds as gusts run into the 40 mph range. Fire danger remains high and grass/brush fires are most likely in the afternoon.

CANON CITY: High – 64; Low – 41. Warm with strong afternoon and overnight winds, especially as they are channeled through the river valley towards Pueblo. Gusts could be in the 40 mph or more range at times.

WOODLAND PARK: High – 50; Low – 30. No fire advisories exist for Teller county and Woodland Park, but very strong winds still pose a threat in the afternoon with 40 to 50 mph gusts possible today and even at times tonight.

TRI-LAKES: High – 50s; Low – 30s. Mild with very strong afternoon and overnight winds with gusts in the 40 mph range. A few stronger gusts could happen north of Monument Hill on the way to Denver.

PLAINS: High – 60s; Low – 60s. Very warm and windy today with wind gusts in the  20 to 30 mph range today and tonight. Brush and grass fire danger remains high today, especially in the afternoon.

WALSENBURG/TRINIDAD: High – 60s; Low – 30s. Warm with dangerous winds in the afternoon and overnight hours, prompting a high wind warning from the mountains through the stretch of I-25 from Walsenburg through Trinidad. Westerly winds could easily gust into and over the 60 mph range, meaning semi trucks, even full loads, could easily tip over especially in the afternoon.

The winds will start to crank out of the west and northwest on Wednesday, increasing fire danger and prompting a Fire Weather Watch for Wednesday afternoon. Highs will be pushed back into the 60s Wednesday and Thursday with cooler air starting to arrive by Friday. We’ll be dry on Wednesday and Thursday but a rain snow mixture might run back through the area by Friday, with light snow possible for Saturday. Much colder air arrives by Sunday and Monday with a much better chance for heavy, accumulating snow on Monday.